Young people enjoy carving pumpkins donated by Meijer! They took their spooky gourds to deck out their front porch for fall.
Over 40 old and new friends of Voices for Earth Justice gathered at Hope House and Gardens for the First Annual Harvest Celebration on October 13. Attendees of all ages enjoyed some of the best parts of fall: with food, cider, doughnuts, and pumpkins!
Keeping with this year’s focus on food, VEJ invited Chef Anthony “TK” King and Rosalyn Flint, founder and owner of Urban Country Teahouse, to showcase their talents.
Using squash grown in VEJ’s garden, Chef TK, made two dishes over the campfire: a savory and a sweet. TK pulled the spaghetti squash into a noodle-like dish. Additionally, he turned butternut and delicata squash into a cast-iron, cinnamon-flavored, sweetly-inspired dish. Chef TK added a dash of humor to entertain his audience, and sent them home with his recipes so they could enjoy them again and again.
Chef TK wasn’t the only one cooking. Five local friends brought their best homemade soups to compete in VEJ’s “Souper Bowl.” Guests sampled all five soups and voted for their favorite. Rukaya Abdallah’s spicy lentil soup came out on top while the other four cooks said “Wait ‘til next year!”
Rosalyn Flint engaged attendees in an informative and flavorful presentation about tea. After providing some background on tea, she dived into how people can grow their own herbs for tea-making. Additionally, she prepped and provided warm, satisfying tea samples, which bolstered spirits on a chilly October afternoon.
Taste, however, was not the only sense satisfied. Musical performances by Rachel Connors and Michael Feld enchanted with their talents: Connors rocked the keyboard.. Feld dazzled with technologically-produced jams.
The crowd of young people enjoyed the music and cooking, but the pumpkin carving station inspired the biggest smiles. Scooping goop from the pumpkins’ centers, drawing their creative designs, and using tools to actualize those ideas provided space for the kids to be both messy and innovative. Meijer’s contribution of the pumpkins made this activity possible. (Thank you, Meijer, for your donation!)
Even though the fall-themed decorations are tucked away until next year, the memories of Harvest Celebration’s joy and excitement are still fresh. The laughter and high spirits will carry VEJ’s staff forward as we plan a fabulous Winter Wellness Series. Look for more information about this series in the upcoming weeks on our website and Facebook Page.